Thursday, February 16, 2006

Thought-Provoking

Here's a quote that you can't read quickly. Please take the time to read it and think about it. Don't simply nod your head and "agree". Truly ponder it and consider how it may apply to you. A friend wrote:

"CHRISTIANITY is not a technique, something to attend in a home or building, a philosophy of lifestyle, a belief system, or a social and do-good club. "CHURCH" is not something we can attain with knowledge and effort and sincerity. It is a Sovereign issue of God’s Intent, Timing, and Gifts. "I praise You, Father" for that! :) "

Christianity is not a philosophy of lifestyle…Christianity is not a belief system… It is not merely about believing the right things. It is tempting and even easy to begin thinking that what is wrong with some people is that they are believing false doctrines and they have false ideas about what God is like. But if the only thing we accomplish is to reform one's belief system… if all they do is exchange wrong beliefs for right beliefs… if all they do is think about God in a more accurate way… that comes up short. Yes, it is good to not follow false doctrines. But, there's something lacking.

For example: If someone stays married because they believe they "have to" because the Bible teaches against divorce, it is good that they are willing to follow the instruction of God's Word by not getting a divorce. However, their marriage will fall VERY short of what God wants their marriage to be like. He wants their marriage to be an example of Christ and the church, yet they are married only because "the Bible says". There will be many "small" facial expressions of disappointment and deep down there will not be joy in the marriage at all. I'm sure you know people who are "married", but there is very little heartfelt affection between them. How sad!!!!

See what I'm getting at? If we obey God merely because of a belief system… i.e. if we believe that a Christian is someone who must be Christlike, rather than someone who has merely said a prayer (i.e. we "believe" the right thing)… then our lives will lack many characteristics of Christ. We will lack joy. We will not be in awe over our God. A form of thankfulness will be there because the Bible says "be thankful", but it will not be overflowing from our hearts to the extent God wants it to. What about our genuine affection toward God? Loving God with all our heart must come from our heart!

Christianity is not a technique…

Do you ever treat Christianity like a "belief system" or "philosophy of lifestyle"? Do you ever treat it like a "technique"? Ask God to reveal it to you, to search you. I must admit, there have definitely been thinking patterns develop in my own life, that reduced Christianity to such things. Thankfully, God showed me. We are so prone to invent methods and mental compartments. We are so prone to treat the study of God the same way we treat the study of science, deriving theories for how he does things and models for how God works. Hmmm.

So, here's the original quote again. And if you like, I posted the link to the entire article from which the quote came:

"CHRISTIANITY is not a technique, something to attend in a home or building, a philosophy of lifestyle, a belief system, or a social and do-good club. "CHURCH" is not something we can attain with knowledge and effort and sincerity. It is a Sovereign issue of God’s Intent, Timing, and Gifts. "I praise You, Father" for that! :) "
-- http://www.allathisfeet.com/housechurch/index.html

2 comments:

Echo said...

Amen, brother, Even Moses knew that it wasn't about the law but about the presence of the Lord.
I have at times had to put down my guitar and Bible, as they were actually distracting me from God. I have had to take captive the lie that by them I could some how conjure up the presence of the Lord. If I am His lover, I want to treat Him such. Thank you for the encouragments.

Anonymous said...

Proverbs 1:7
The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.